New man Garath McCleary was thrilled with his first appearance at the Madejski Stadium on Saturday and now can’t wait for the Premier League to start.
The excitement around Reading is reaching fever pitch as the Royals kick-start their 2012/13 campaign in just five days’ time, and McCleary is as eager as anyone else.
“It’s exciting – I can’t wait to get started,” he told readingfc.co.uk. “It will be a tough game against Stoke but if we go out and do what we can do then we’ll hopefully get three points.
“We know how they play and they’re a good team. They’ve been established in the Premier League for a while now and they do their job really well. But we’ll try and get the ball on the wings and use our strength in depth to our advantage.”
The winger, who signed from Nottingham Forest in May, was impressive in last weekend’s friendly win over Palace and is determined for more of the same against Stoke this Saturday.
“We played really well against Palace - especially in the second half. We created a lot of chances and managed to get the ball in the box a lot. It was great for our strikers to score too.
“All the wingers we’ve got here are really direct, and like to get close to the byline and cross the ball. For me it’s brilliant that I’ve been able to play.”
Fellow new signing Pavel Pogrebnyak notched his first goal in front of the Madjeski faithful, and McCleary is optimistic that the Russian can continue to shine in the Premier League.
“He did really well in the Premier League last season. I remember him putting in some great performances for Fulham and scoring goals - hopefully he can do the same for us this season.
“But we have a number of talented strikers and given the chance I’m sure they will go out and do what they’ve done in training.”